Amanda, our fearless host for this read along, is encouraging us to post our thoughts on a weekly basis. (Here's her summary and thoughts so far.) I really like this idea, as it gives us mini deadlines and for me, I hope, it will help to keep me going strong through this massive book. Hopefully you, my readers, will find these regular updates fun and not overly boring. I will keep them short and sweet and in the end, perhaps you'll want to read the book too someday!
This week's assignment was to read through chapter seven, which in my book (Penguin Classics illustrated edition) was to page114. My initial reaction to the first couple of chapters was, oh dear. I didn't understand much and I could tell I would be needing to find the "Dickens groove" quickly or this would be one long book! I understood simply that there was a court case that had been in the works for years and years and that no one really saw the end to this thing ever happening. We didn't get much of a clue as to what the case entailed, but that it was just part of the court tradition to hear it every day.
But, once we were introduced to a character named Esther, I was much happier. She reminded me of Jane Eyre as she gave us her quick background. She meet up with a couple of other teenagers who were also wards of a dude named John Jarndyce (who is also somehow connected to the never ending case). As they were all being transported to his house (called Bleak House) they stopped over at the abode of the Jellyby's. And what a place that was! Loved the crazy descriptions of a household gone wild! Sounded a bit familiar actually! (Oh man, I really hope not!) Anyway, I totally enjoyed those chapters.
Then we meet a couple of other guys, both who seem not very nice. And then the last chapter, yet more characters are introduced. A housekeeper, her grandson, a maid and some lawyers looking to rent some rooms there, I'm thinking.
As all Dickens books are, it seems a bit mind boggling at first, but I know from past experiences, that if I just hang in there, all these characters and stories will somehow come together and soon, I imagine it to be soap opera-ish romp!
Bottom line thought so far: I'm liking it though it's a bit confusing.
Read along participants: What do you think so far?